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Of Monster Algae Blooms and Monstrous Lies

Where the hell is Politifact when you need them?

There is no partisan agenda here

There is no partisan agenda here

[Update 9/25/11 – We found Politifact – with their head located far up Gov. Christie’s ass! Disgraceful “journalism”.

Proliferation of spineless jellyfish isn’t limited to the Barnegat Bay section of the NJ shore.

No, human invertebrates populate the shore these day, their proliferation fueled by an effluvia of nutrient rich bullshit oozing from the Governor and DEP press Office.

You know, stuff like this:

Christie, in a news conference in Bergenfield today, said his environmental record is strong and that the ocean “is the cleanest it’s been in decades.” The beach this year, you saw no type of debris, no type of waste coming up on the beach this year”, Christie said.

The Governor is given a pass on those lies by the media and some shore advocacy groups.

Which is kinda hard to stomach, given screaming news headlines like this about the decline of ocean ecosystems and Governor Christie’s bad environmental record (these are just a small sample and not from my APP editorial or Wolfenotes, but mainstream media):

More Kirk Moore reports:

BRICK – Swimmers, boaters and kayakers should avoid the area around Seaweed Point near the mouth of Kettle Creek, where new washups of rotting sea lettuce and algae have been seen, officials with the Ocean County Health Department said Monday.

Hydrogen sulfide gas from the rotting weed has made life miserable for three weeks and even sickened residents, said Linda Chris of the Seawood Harbor Property Owners Association, which has been pressing government agencies to clean up the shoreline.

“I grew up here. You always got a whiff of swamp gas coming off the marsh, that’s part of life here”, Chris said. “But it’s never been like this. It’s the sick condition of the bay.”

NRDC Reports released by Clean Ocean Action directly contradict the Governor’s statements:

Syringes, Sewage, and Swimmers  A Dangerous Mix

The annual report, “Testing the Waters” prepared by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and released in New Jersey by COA and Environment NJ, reviews national beach closures and advisories in 2008 (www.nrdc.org/ttw/). The report shows 20,341 days of beach closings and advisories nationwide at ocean, bay, and Great Lakes beaches in 2008. In New Jersey, there were 208 days of total closures/advisories in 2008, an increase from the 142 days of closures/advisories in 2007. Many of the closures were preemptive due to medical waste or trash that washed up on the beach (120 days) and heavy rainfall 56 closures at five beaches with known storm water problems (56 days).  Fecal pollution caused 31 closures, most of which occurred at NJ’s bay and estuary beaches.

Clean Ocean Action’s own Reports directly contradict Governor Christie’s statement:

In 2010, 8,372 volunteers came together in record showing to collect an unprecidented (sic) amount of debris from the New Jersey shores. Volunteers collected and recorded 475,321 pieces of debris, turing two days of work into a legacy of information that will drive policies and programs for years to come.

Kirk Moore reports on Rutgers professor Mike Kennish’s latest Report on the continuing declining ecological health of Barnegat Bay (See: State of the Bay Report: 2011)

New bay study cites declining trends

Underwater seagrass meadows in Barnegat Bay have lost 50 percent to 88 percent of their plant mass since 2004, a measure that researchers say is a critical indicator of the bay’s declining health.

The seagrass situation is a big part of the 2011 State of the Bay report being presented today at Ocean County College in Toms River. Of 19 key health indicators selected by the report authors, 11 have shown no improvement or are in decline.


And more Christie lies like this:

“There are some folks in the environmental movement who will never give me credit for anything I do, because they didn’t support me in the election and they’re Democrats, so they’ve got a political agenda”, he said.

So where the hell is Politifact when you need them?

[Update: Full disclosure photo. I went on to serve in McGreevey DEP. Does that make me a partisan hack and hypocrite and prove Christie’s point? No.

I wasn’t providing McGreevey with political cover and went on to huge environmental accomplishments at DEP, including Highlands Act, Category One Waters, and phosphorus effluent limits. After leaving DEP – just like before arriving – I resumed strong and independent policy criticism of Democrats and Republicans alike.

Wolfe (L) Gubernatorial candidate Jim McGreeevey (R) (Labor Day 2001, Belmar, NJ)

Wolfe (L), w/Gubernatorial candidate Jim McGreevey (Labor Day 2001, Belmar, NJ)

A challenge to my colleagues to stand up:

“A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.” –
—  Winston Churchill

Nazi propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels was the master of the “biglie” tactic in which a lie, no matter how outrageous, is repeated often enough that it will eventually be accepted as truth. Goebbels explained:

“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”

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